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She was all-in as was I, but then she was not.

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  • #387323
    Matt
    Participant

    Hi
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>I’ve been going through quite an emotional rough patch during these past few weeks. I hope someone can help me gain some insights as sometimes I doubt I am thinking clearly enough.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>So, I’ve known this woman for quite a long time. Due to a variety of reasons, we remained acquaintances for some years and it was only a few months ago that we started to get closer. Due to corona and restrictions where I am (not in the US), it was quite difficult for us to see each other physically as often as we would have liked; yet, we spent long hours on the phone, texted each other every day and were, to some extent, very well involved with each other’s lives. We constantly talked about our days, how we did at work and all those ‘minor’ things you share with your close ones.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>I guess our relationship took the form of some sort of LDR.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>Anyway, everything started off amazingly. Through our conversations I got to know lots of things about her and found out many qualities in her I admire and cherish. She started to show similar feelings towards me — or so she said. I said I loved her, she said she loved me.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>One day, after a few months following this long-distance dynamic, we had a conversation about “the future” — I have to admit when she put it on the table it took me by surprise; but not in a bad manner, I just wasn’t expecting that conversation.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>I mean, before this conversation we had already talked about plans for a post-corona world. We began talking about more intimate things and plans, all this filled with love and passion. We managed to share some amazing sexting sessions and intimate photos. I was like an open book to her regarding my feelings and how I actually saw her as part of my life for the long run. She laid some ground rules to be fulfilled before taking our ‘virtual’ relationship to the next level. I understood them, accepted them and, in my mind, put them as non-negotiable for the time being, until we were able to actually spend more time together in the ‘real’ world. Only to have her a few weeks later mentioning how she wanted to take the next step even though her initial conditions weren’t yet achieved. For me it was like she had put on some rules, only to suggest breaking them later herself.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>My reaction was that of confusion. I didn’t get angry, much less scared, I just wasn’t expecting her to make that move and didn’t know what to say at first. She took that as if I was getting cold feet on us and got heavily scared; she freaked out and told me that suggesting we could further consolidate our relationship was a very stupid thing to say, that she was sorry and regretted bringing up that subject. It didn’t matter how much I tried to explain my reaction, nothing changed her mind.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>From that moment onward, our relationship started to cool off. She became distant and stopped being that loving woman I thought I had found. A hot-and-cold dynamic started to appear, at some times she was okay talking to me as if nothing had happened followed by longer radio silence periods, messages left on ‘seen’ and a sudden barrier between us. She took a ‘defensive’ stance and a more superficial approach to our conversations.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>I tried to keep things going on but eventually, this constant attraction-rejection thing started to wear me out. Dealing with GAD and recurring (albeit mild) depression episodes myself made it harder for me to handle it.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>Eventually, I confronted her about her change of attitude. Her reasoning time and again was that she didn’t feel ready for a relationship. That she really didn’t know what she wanted. That she had found in me ‘the right guy’ (in opposition to the ‘wrong guys’ she had found in her previous relationships) but still wasn’t ready to commit to anything solid.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>I told her I was willing to either take a more ‘casual’ relationship (sort of friends with benefits approach) or even to going back to a non-romantic non-sexual relationship if that was what suited her best for the time being; but none of those sufficed, although I never got an open rejection either (as in “I don’t want anything with you”).</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>Anyway, I know I must have made mistakes. I am aware I am by no means an ‘easy’ piece or the perfect catch. But I am absolutely sure that I was honest and upfront about my expectations, my wishes and what I could and could not offer to her.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>I got to the point where all this push-pull from her became unbearable and decided to cut things off. I told her that it was okay if she didn’t know what she actually wanted, that I couldn’t (and wouldn’t) force her to decide anything if she was not ready but that I just couldn’t cope with such an emotional rollercoaster of her flirting with me, being sweet, caring, seductive and then just cold and detached.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>She kinda got mad and told me she was surprised about my decision. As if she hadn’t noticed any of my questions and confrontations from weeks before. “I don’t understand” were her words — I thought that maybe she just wasn’t paying attention.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>Long story short. This is hurting me sooo bad. I really thought I had found the woman for me to spend many years to come (I am a bit sceptical on ‘the one’ thing, but I really wanted to build something solid with her).</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>Now my feelings are a mixture of “was she playing with me?” “did she really care about me but was, genuinely, not ready?” “was everything she said at the beginning just a lie?”.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>And more importantly, when I hit rock bottom I just question if I will ever find another woman with whom I can feel as happy as I felt with her. I just don’t know if maybe I am not that attractive or interesting or lovable. I am aware these questions might come across as stupid or ridiculous. From an analytic point of view I know those might be exaggerations, but damn, this hurts really really bad. Deeply.</p>
    <p class=”_1qeIAgB0cPwnLhDF9XSiJM”>Any advice? Books about situations like these? Has anyone gone through something similar? How did you manage?</p>

    #387477
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Matt:

    I just noticed your thread. I will read and reply to you in about 10 hours from now.

    anita

    #387503
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Matt:

    I’m sorry, I failed/ forgot to return to your thread today. I intend to do so.. in about 10 hours from now.

    anita

    #387517
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Matt:

    I said I loved her, she said she loved me… We managed to share some amazing sexting sessions and intimate photos”, “One day, after a few months following this long-distance dynamic, we had a conversation about ‘the future’.. I was like an open book to her regarding my feelings and how I actually saw her as part of my life for the long run“-

    – It is my understanding that because of the I-love-you-s, the virtual sex, and the talk about the future and the-long-run, in her mind, the relationship crossed from the first level to the second.

    She laid some ground rules to be fulfilled before taking our ‘virtual’ relationship to the next level“- I think that she laid ground rules not for a future time when the relationship goes to the next level, the 2nd. I think that in her mind and heart the relationship was already in the 2nd level.

    I understood them, accepted them and, in my mind, put them as non-negotiable for the time being, until we were able to actually spend more time together in the ‘real’ world’“- you postponed the 2nd level, in your mind, to a later time, but in her mind, she was already in the 2nd level.

    Only to have her a few weeks later mentioning how she wanted to take the next step even though her initial conditions weren’t yet achieved“- I am repeating myself, I know, but yet again: when she told you that she wanted to take the relationship to the next level (that which I refer to as the 2nd level), she was already in that level for a few weeks prior.

    She took that as if I was getting cold feet on us and got heavily scared; she freaked out.. From that moment onward, our relationship started to cool off. She became distant and stopped being that loving woman I thought I had found. A hot-and-cold dynamic started to appear“- the two of you were together in the 1st level of the relationship and it was lovely and amazing. Next, she moved to the 2nd level by herself and you lagged behind in the 1st. You were alone in the 1st level and she was alone in the 2nd level. Neither one of you aware of this level-separation.  Next, scared and angry, she moved to pre-breakup level.

    I got to the point where all this push-pull from her became unbearable and decided to cut things off“- you moved the relationship to its final level: the breakup.

    I told her that it was okay if she didn’t know what she actually wanted”- she  knew what she wanted during the second level, if not the first, but she wasn’t adequately aware of it.

    “She kinda got mad and told me she was surprised about my decision… ‘I don’t understand’ were her words — I thought that maybe she just wasn’t paying attention”- she was not paying attention/ not adequately aware; she was confused.

    I am absolutely sure that I was honest and upfront about my expectations, my wishes and what I could and could not offer to her“- she wasn’t aware enough of what she wanted, of what she expected.. to be able to be honest and upfront with you about these things.

    was she playing with me?”- I don’t think so.

    did she really care about me but was, genuinely, not ready?”- I think that she did care about you and  that she was genuinely ready (not.. not ready) before you knew about it.

    was everything she said at the beginning just a lie?”- no, not according to my understanding. I think that she meant it and rushed into a second level, found herself alone in it, and not adequately aware of what was happening .. she wasn’t able to honestly explain herself to you. She was too scared and angry to explain things to herself or to you.

    I just don’t know if maybe I am not that attractive or interesting or lovable“- that’s probably what she is thinking and feeling, ever since she found herself alone in the second level of the relationship.

    Any advice?“- if what I wrote here makes sense to you, you can send her a message asking her if this is what happened, and take it from there.

    anita

    #387851
    Matt
    Participant

    Hi Anita, thank you so much for your reply.

    All you said actually made a lot of sense to me. I had a few more conversations with her after taking some time to reflect on your comments.

    Things went well from there. Unfortunately, our relationship could not be salvaged –or at least not in the way I would’ve liked. But on the other hand, we arrived at a very conscious and respectful ending. We were able to recognize things weren’t working right and that this asynchrony between us was not something we could live with right now.

    I ended up reassuring her that if she ever feels ready or has a clearer idea about what she wants later on, and that if that is something I can offer her; I’d be more than happy to give ‘us’ another chance.

    I don’t know if we will have a chance to try things again later on, but in the meantime I feel grateful for all we went through.

    It’s been painful, I can’t deny it. But I am trying to take it one day at a time.

    Hopefully something good will come out of this.

    #387852
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Matt:

    You are very welcome. I am glad that you were able to arrive “at a very conscious and respectful ending“, and am sorry that the relationship cannot be salvaged at this time. It may never be salvaged.

    You wrote that hopefully something good comes out of this: if used as a learning opportunity and experience- good can come out of it. If you are interested (and it is okay with me if you are not), you can use your thread as a place of learning. It is a public forum of course, and not a therapeutic setting (neither am I a therapist), but as two members we can still learn together, if we are willing.

    anita

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